Blog Hop!

My friend Carrie Charley Brown, tagged me in a blog hop this week, so here goes...

Why do you write what you do?  I write picture books, because that is my life right now!  I have five kids ranging from 3 to 11 years old and they all enjoy a good picture book.  I love reading and writing picture books because it's perfect for our chaotic house--I can almost always find just a few moments to read or write a short story!

How does your writing process work? My writing process is erratic.  I write when I find a quiet or not so quiet moment and I usually have no idea what's going to happen in the story until I'm typing it.  I never know how the story is going to end, except for the few stories that I actually told my children before I wrote them down.  One of them, is "The Raindrop Who Couldn't Fall", my debut picture book that is coming out this fall...

What is the hardest part about writing? The hardest part about writing is the dozens of rejections.  The form letter rejections are the worst!  But I actually get kind of excited about rejections that are personal.  At least the really read the story, right?

What scares you?  I guess I'm scared of letting the momentum of life make my choices for me.  I want to make sure that I'm fully present.  I don't want to look back and regret how I spent my time.  I want to be able to say, I focused on my kids and my family and what's truly important in life.

Here are the blogs of the authors I'm tagging: Carol Gordon EksterPaul Czajak, and Joyce Audy Zarins

Interview with Christine Marie Alemshah, author of "Right This Instant"

What inspired you to write Right This Instant?
It was a combination of two ideas really. First, I observed how children and adults alike have embraced this notion of having things right away due to use of computers, smart phones, fast food, etc. Secondly I overheard older relatives speaking in awe of my two year old’s nieces ability to pick up a smart phone and know exactly how to use it as a camera. I thought, you know there’s a story there. I let the idea percolate for a while and eventually ‘Right This Instant’ was born.
Right This Instant is your debut picture book.  How long did it take for this story to be accepted for publication?
The submission history has an interesting story behind it. I submitted to an editor in 2011. Several months later I received her response. The story wasn’t right for that publisher, but she did provide valuable feedback regarding the ending. I stopped submitting for several months and really took a good look at what I could do differently. Then I sent it to my writer’s group who agreed the changes were for the better. I went out on submission again, and MeeGenius thought it was a wonderful story, but, unfortunately, weren’t taking on new clients until the New Year. I contacted them again in early 2013 asking if they were still interested, and this time I received an acceptance!
You have a couple of picture books coming out digitally.  How you feel about e-books versus print books?
It’s actually funny. When I first got my own kindle I resisted reading e-books. I didn't think I'd ever get used to it not feeling or smelling like a real book. Now I love it. I even read on my iphone sometimes. Digital publishing is a new frontier, and I am happy to be a part of it.
What would you like children to learn from your stories?
My main goal is for children to develop a lifelong love for reading. I hope they enjoy the silliness or emotions portrayed in my stories and that they fall in love with the characters.
What are you working on right now?
I have three picture books in the revision process right now. I’m also trying to get caught up on Julie Hedlund’s 12x12 picture book draft challenge this summer.
What is most challenging for you as a writer?
I like to type my first drafts, so for me avoiding social media during writing time is the most difficult thing. Sometimes I need to research an idea, and if I’m not careful I will end up on facebook instead of the information page.
When do you write?
My best writing time happens in the morning when I’m wide-eyed and dewy. My mind is the most open and receptive to embracing the creative thread and letting loose a new story.
What is your favorite book and why?
This is tough to choose just one. I have lists of all my favorites! If I had to choose the one that impacted my life the most and just wowed me with what was possible in creative writing, it would be JRR Tolkien’s Return of The King. 

Right This Instant is now available here from the MeeGenius Bookstore or at the MeeGenius App for ipad, iphone, android, or Google TV.